Maintaining dignity and preserving independence is a primary concern as we age. Yet, this proves challenging when a loved one suffers from Alzheimer’s disease or dementia. To keep your loved one as independent and safe as possible, home health care may be the option.
Home health care includes medical or non-medical services provided in the comfort of a person’s own home. Depending on the type of care needed, home health professionals may be nurses, home health aides, physical therapists, occupational therapists, speech therapists, or social workers. Each person’s situation is unique.
In the beginning stages of Alzheimer’s or dementia, personal care assistance may be what is most needed, as long as the person does not have any other medical needs.
Personal care assistance can be any of the following services:
Homemaker and companion care
This is assistance with tasks like laundry, errands, meal preparation, and light housekeeping. If individuals receiving care are able to leave their homes, homemaker and companion caregivers can accompany them to appointments or take them shopping. Homemakers can help you or your loved one with household management to ensure a clean, safe, and orderly environment. Companions focus on well-being and provide social interaction, physical activities, and recreation. They create a safe and supportive environment for activities like reading, conversing, and playing games, while assisting with leisure time and providing cognitive stimulation.
Home health aide (HHA) care
This is personal care for you or your loved one, which includes assistance with activities, such as preparing meals, medication reminders, and exercising. HHAs offer step-by-step directions for dressing and give cues and directions for bathing, grooming, and toileting. HHAs can also assist with transfers for those who have difficulty walking. Most home health care providers allow HHAs to perform some of the duties of a homemaker/companion. Nurse clinical managers usually supervise the care given by homemakers, companions, and HHAs.
Respite care gives you an important interlude from your caring for your loved one. While your caregiving responsibilities may take much of your time, it’s important to take time for yourself too. Homemaker, companions, and home health aides can help:
- Pick up groceries and medications
- Perform light housekeeping
- Wash and fold laundry
- Accompany your loved one with Alzheimer’s or dementia to outings and appointments
Most importantly, these professionals can provide you with peace of mind when you are unable to be there yourself.
Alzheimer’s and dementia can be very challenging for both the person with the disease and their family. It’s important to select a home health care agency that hires caregivers who embody compassion, excellence, and reliability.
BAYADA Home Health Care understands that Alzheimer’s and dementia affect each person differently and because of this, we customize a care plan tailored to the individual’s needs. As the disease progresses, we continue to evaluate the situation and work with you to keep adapting our care to support you and your loved on in the best way possible.
To learn about how home health care can help you, contact us today.
“If you are not taking care of yourself, you can’t effectively take care of someone else. Take time for yourself, ask for help, because you can’t do it all on your own.” Janice Bucknam, LPN, BAYADA Client Services Manager and Alzheimer’s Support Group facilitator